Last Thursday the National Center for Health Statistics released a report on sexual activity among teenagers. According to the report, 27% of young men and 29% of young women ages 15 to 24 say they’ve never had a sexual encounter. Those numbers were up slightly from the last such report, which was released in 2005. In that one, 22% of both sexes said they’d never had a sexual encounter.
What interested me most about last Thursday’s report was that my newspaper cited it under the heading “Drop in Teen Sex Seen.” When I first saw that heading, I felt encouraged. But after reading the article, what I really felt was discouragement. Rather than seeing the 27% and 29% of young adults who haven’t had a sexual encounter, I saw the 73% and 71% who HAVE.
Where did our train of raising our kids derail, catapult off the bridge, and tumble down into the gorge? How did we allow virginity to become such an undesirable, archaic lifestyle? When did the phrase “everybody’s doing it” become so predominantly true in regards to premarital sex? It’s sad, so sad.
Tell me, are you the parent of a child who is still a virgin? Then by all means make it one of your life goals to do everything within your power to help that child remain sexually pure before marriage! Not too long ago, I had a very frank conversation with Ryan, my 13-year-old 8th grader. Since he is so big into sports, I built my words around athletics. I said, “Son, if you make all-conference in three sports in high school and get a college scholarship to play ball at a Division I school, but engage in premarital sex, I will consider your high school years a failure. But, on the other hand, if you don’t do much of anything in high school but come out of it still a virgin, I will consider those years a success.”
You say, “That’s too extreme an attitude to take on the subject.” No, it isn’t. That’s the only kind of attitude that will save a kid from ending up on the wrong side of the statistics. Until we parents start truly emphasizing and prioritizing the matter of remaining a virgin before marriage, we’re going to keep getting the results we’ve been getting for years now. And I, for one, refuse to settle for less than God’s highest and best for my boys.